Saturday, July 28, 2012

Half-Marathon Fever and Race Volunteering

BCS Marathon JPEG_cropped

{Image: Screen shot from the BCS Marathon website}

Registration for the BCS (Bryan/College Station) Marathon and Half-Marathon opened this week, and two people told me yesterday that they registered for the half-marathon.  Which got me thinking…

Do I want to run a December half-marathon?  Hmm…

On the Yes side of the scale, I have been running this summer.  The December race day means I’d have four solid months to build my base up to the half distance.  Also, I love half-marathons!  To my mind, it is the perfect long-distance race.

On the No side of the scale, the race is expensive—$55 and up, depending on when you register(ed).  Given the uncertain state of my employment status in the fall, I don’t feel comfortable paying so much money for a race.  After all, if I want to run that morning, I can do it for free!  And I know I’ll be training in the fall because I still want to run a half in the winter or spring.  The other item on the No side of the scale is that if I don’t run the race, I can volunteer for it!  My friend Christy and I volunteered for the inaugural BCS Marathon in 2011, and it was a lot of fun.  We had to get up super-early (after being out super-late—party animals are we!), wear funny costumes, and hand out grapes, candy, and beverages to the marathoners.  It was my first experience as a race volunteer, and it felt good to be part of the running and racing community on the sidelines.  I know from my own races how nice it is to see friendly faces out there on the course.  It was my pleasure to give back, to make someone else’s race a little more fun.

I think I’m going to stick to the sidelines for this one.  Hopefully I’ll get to cheer on my friends Tonya and Trainer Tom as they run the half.  I’ll hand out candy again, yelling, “Fiber or no fiber?” to the runners who get to choose between fruit and candy.  I’ll get to be part of the magic of race day while saving my pennies.  Then after the race, I’ll head out for my own run, happy to have the chance to be both a runner and a cheerleader on the same day.

Just for fun, here are two photos from last year’s BCS Marathon.  You can see our aid station had a doctor theme, even though I’m pretty sure most of us are not that kind of doctor.

Sunrise at the Marathon 

Most of Us Are Not _That_ Kind of Doctor

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